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Game Off! Einhorn-Mets Deal Implodes

(Reuters) – David Einhorn has struck out in his attempt to buy a stake in the New York Mets.

Einhorn, who runs the hedge fund Greenlight Capital, said on Thursday that his plans to buy a large minority stake in the Major League Baseball team for $200 million has collapsed.

“I am disappointed to announce that I will not be purchasing an ownership interest in the New York Mets baseball team at this time,” Einhorn said in a statement.

Einhorn said the Mets organization asked for too many changes to make the deal work.

“It is clear that it will not be possible for me to consummate the transaction on the terms that the Sterling-Mets organization and I originally agreed to several months ago,” Einhorn said.

The team was starved for cash in the wake of the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme. Einhorn, one of the world’s most successful hedge fund managers, was ready to step up to the plate. Greenlight oversaw $7.8 billion as of January.

For Einhorn, a self-professed Mets fan since childhood, the flirtation lasted only a summer.

He proposed making the investment in May after team owners, Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz, were sued for $1 billion by the trustee seeking money for Madoff’s victims.

A federal judge is expected to rule this month on the lawsuit.

(Reporting by Jennifer Ablan, Jonathan Stempel and Svea Herbst-Bayliss. Editing by Lisa Von Ahn and Robert MacMillan)